|Publication number||US7916742 B1|
|Application number||US 11/126,566|
|Publication date||Mar 29, 2011|
|Filing date||May 11, 2005|
|Priority date||May 11, 2005|
|Publication number||11126566, 126566, US 7916742 B1, US 7916742B1, US-B1-7916742, US7916742 B1, US7916742B1|
|Inventors||Michael K. Bugenhagen|
|Original Assignee||Sprint Communications Company L.P.|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (18), Non-Patent Citations (2), Referenced by (6), Classifications (14), Legal Events (3)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
1. Field of the Invention
The invention relates to telecommunications, and in particular, to systems, methods, and software for dynamic jitter buffer calibration in telecommunication networks.
2. Description of the Prior Art
It is commonly known that jitter buffers are located at the end points of most packet communication paths used for real-time applications. For example, jitter buffers are implemented in media gateways and SIP phones. Jitter buffers are also implemented at customer premise equipment, and interim network devices. Jitter buffers are used to reduce the effects of variable latency or delay in packet communication paths. Given the live nature of real-time applications, jitter buffer operations have a large affect on the quality of real-time applications. For example, an end user could experience either a gap in the operation of or a complete cessation of a real-time application as a result of packet jitter.
Jitter buffers can be static or dynamic. Static jitter buffers are pre-configured with a particular size that does not change during operation. When a static jitter buffer becomes congested, packets are simply dropped. Dynamic jitter buffers can be automatically reconfigured to accommodate higher traffic patterns. Dynamic jitter buffers are sometimes referred to as adaptive jitter buffers.
Unfortunately, prior art implementations of dynamic jitter buffers involve high cost protocol analysis methods that require processor intensive operations. For example, some systems utilize impulse driven time series models. In this system, a computer simulation of a network is created to estimate jitter. However, this system does not perform real-time buffer maintenance. In another example, a mean deviation from the short term average delay is calculated to produce a histogram that can be used to determine periods for which jitter would exceed acceptable levels. Unfortunately, this solution is very processor intensive. Lastly, another solution measures the discard rate and adjusts the size of a jitter buffer based on the discard rate. This solution is reactive, rather than pro-active. It would be desirable to dynamically calibrate jitter buffers in an efficient, real-time, and pro-active manner.
An embodiment of the invention helps solve the above problems and other problems by providing systems, methods, and software products that provide for dynamically calibrating a jitter buffer based on a percentage used of the jitter buffer. Such a solution provides for efficiently adapting the size of a jitter buffer without the need for complex and processor intensive operations. By adjusting the size of a jitter buffer in a simple and dynamic fashion, undesirable delay can be removed from a service session, and gaps prevented. Similarly, delay can be easily introduced into a service session when necessary.
In an embodiment of the invention, a communication system comprises a jitter buffer and a processing system. The jitter buffer is configured to buffer traffic. The processing system is configured to determine the percentage used of the jitter buffer by the buffered traffic, and calibrate the size of the jitter buffer in response to the percentage used of the jitter buffer.
In an embodiment of the invention, the processing system is configured to calibrate the size of the jitter buffer by increasing the size of the jitter buffer.
In an embodiment of the invention, the processing system is configured to calibrate the size of the jitter buffer by decreasing the size of the jitter buffer.
In an embodiment of the invention, the jitter buffer is further configured to receive traffic for a packet service session between the communication system and another communication system.
In an embodiment of the invention, the packet service session comprises a voice over internet protocol (VoIP) session.
In an embodiment of the invention, the communication system comprises a mobile phone.
In an embodiment of the invention, the communication system comprises a media gateway.
In an embodiment of the invention, the communication system comprises a media gateway controller.
In an embodiment of the invention, a method of operating a communication system having a jitter buffer comprises buffering traffic in the jitter buffer, determining the percentage used of the jitter buffer by the buffered traffic, and calibrating the size of the jitter buffer in response to the percentage used of the jitter buffer.
In an embodiment of the invention, calibrating the size of the jitter buffer comprises increasing the size of the jitter buffer.
In an embodiment of the invention, calibrating the size of the jitter buffer comprises decreasing the size of the jitter buffer.
An embodiment of the invention, the method includes receiving traffic in the jitter buffer for a packet service session between the communication system and another communication system.
The same reference number represents the same element on all drawings.
Interface 140 is any interface capable of receiving and transmitting session traffic to and from communication system 110. Similarly, interface 150 is any interface capable of receiving and transmitting session traffic to and from communication system 110. Session traffic could include bearer traffic as well has session control traffic. Processing system 120 is any processing system capable of processing session traffic. Additionally, processing system 120 is any processing system capable of controlling jitter buffer 130. Jitter buffer 130 is any jitter buffer capable of buffering session traffic.
It should be noted that communication system 110 could be any communication system capable of handling session traffic. For example, communication system 110 could be an end device, such as a personal computer, a video system, a mobile phone, a wireless computer, a music device, a multi-media device, or a pager, as well as other types of end devices. Communication system 110 could also be an intermediate device, such as a media gateway, Pseudo Wire device, VoIP phone station, a media termination system, or a modem system, as well as other types of intermediate systems. Session traffic could be voice traffic, video traffic, audio traffic, or data traffic, as well as other types of traffic.
Advantageously, communication system 110 allows for dynamically maintaining the percentage used of jitter buffer 130 within a desirable range. When the size of a jitter buffer is too large, session traffic is delayed and end users experience undesirable delay. When the size of a jitter buffer is too small, end users experience undesirable gaps in traffic as some traffic is lost or discarded. Dynamically adjusting the size of a jitter buffer based upon a percentage used of the jitter buffer advantageously maintains the size of the jitter buffer within a preferred range whereby end users neither experience traffic gaps nor delay. In addition, changing the size of a jitter buffer based on a percentage used is less processor intensive and more pro-active than prior art solutions. And the system can now track packet flow performance by watching how the jitter buffer historically increased or decreased it's size. This logging function provides a flow by flow histogram. The ability to log and detect this higher level of network performance is very useful as an operational measures trouble shooting and pro-active alarming of real-time packet flows.
Media gateway 410 includes processing system 420, jitter buffer 430, interface 440, and translation unit 450. Translation unit 450 receives traffic in a time division multiplexed TDM format and translates the traffic to a packet format. Translation unit 450 receives the traffic at various levels and therefore translates the traffic at varying rates. This variance causes jitter that requires correction by jitter buffer 430. Jitter buffer 430 receives the converted packet traffic and buffers the traffic to reduce the jitter. Traffic is then output to interface 440. Interface 440 provides an interface to packet network 460. Similarly, traffic arriving at interface 440 from packet network 460 is also buffered by jitter buffer 430. A smooth output is then provided to translation unit 450 for conversion to a TDM format. The TDM traffic is then sent to PSTN 470.
In operation, a voice over packet session is setup between end device 480 and end device 490. The voice session could be, for example, a VoIP session. The session is setup in accordance with procedures well known in the art. During such a session, voice traffic is exchanged between end devices 480 and 490 over packet network 460 and PSTN 470. Media gateway 410 provides a gateway from PSTN 470 to packet network 460. Packet voice traffic from end device 480 is converted to TDM traffic for end device 490. Similarly, TDM traffic form end device 490 is converted to a packet format for end device 480.
During operation, processing system 420 controls jitter buffer 430. Traffic sent from PSTN 470 to packet network 460 will be referred to as incoming traffic. Traffic sent from packet network 460 will be referred to as outgoing traffic. Jitter buffer 430 could be comprised of an incoming traffic buffer and an outgoing traffic buffer. Processing system 420 monitors jitter buffer 430 to determine the percent utilization jitter buffer 430 by buffered traffic. If the percent utilization exceeds an upper threshold, the size of the jitter buffer is increased. If the percent utilization falls below a lower threshold, the size of the jitter buffer is decreased.
In operation, end device 520 is in communication with packet network 510 over a packet protocol. Other intermediate elements, such as a wireless base station or a local area network (LAN) switch, are not shown for the purpose of clarity. During a session, such as a VoIP session, a user provides voice input to input/output 580. Codec 560 encodes the voice input into a digital signal. The digital signal provided to OMAP 540 for further processing. Lastly, the packetized signal is provided to interface 570 for transmission to packet network 510.
Traffic arriving from packet network 510 is received at interface 570. Interface 570 could be, for example, a radio frequency (RF) transceiver, assuming end device 520 is a wireless device. Alternatively, interface 570 could be an Ethernet interface, as well as other types of packet interfaces well known in the art. End device 520 could also be a wireline device as opposed to a wireless device. Interface 570 transfers the traffic to OMAP 540 for processing. Traffic received from packet network 510 often times contains jitter and requires buffering to smooth out the signal. Thus, the OMAP 540 transfers the traffic to jitter buffer 530 for buffering. Jitter buffer 530 smoothes out the traffic pattern and provides a traffic stream to codec 560 for decoding. The decoded traffic is transferred to input/output module 580. Assuming the output module includes a speaker, the traffic is broadcast to the user in an audible format. Alternative, the output could include a display module whereby the traffic is displayed.
As discussed above with respect to
Advantageously, communication networks 400 and 500 allow for dynamically maintaining the percentage used of a jitter buffer within a desirable range. When the size of a jitter buffer is too large, session traffic is delayed and end users experience undesirable delay. When the size of a jitter buffer is too small, end users experience undesirable gaps in traffic as some traffic is lost or discarded. Dynamically adjusting the size of a jitter buffer based upon a percentage used of the jitter buffer advantageously maintains the size of the jitter buffer within a preferred range whereby end users neither experience traffic gaps nor delay. In addition, changing the size of a jitter buffer based on a percentage used is less processor intensive and more pro-active than prior art solutions.
Interface 620 could comprise a network interface card, modem, port, or some other communication device. Signaling interface 620 may be distributed among multiple communication devices. Interface 630 could comprise a computer microprocessor, logic circuit, or some other processing device. Processing system 630 may be distributed among multiple processing devices. Storage system 640 could comprise a disk, tape, integrated circuit, server, or some other memory device. Storage system 640 may be distributed among multiple memory devices.
Processing system 630 retrieves and executes software 650 from storage system 640. Software 650 may comprise an operating system, utilities, drivers, networking software, and other software typically loaded onto a general-purpose computer. Software 650 could also comprise an application program, firmware, or some other form of machine-readable processing instructions. When executed by the processing system 630, software 650 directs processing system 630 to operate as described for communication system 110, media gateway 410, and end device 520.
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|U.S. Classification||370/412, 375/371, 370/516, 370/417, 370/352, 710/56, 370/415|
|Cooperative Classification||H04L47/10, H04J3/0632, H04L47/30|
|European Classification||H04L47/10, H04L47/30, H04J3/06B6|
|May 11, 2005||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: SPRINT COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY L.P., KANSAS
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:BUGENHAGEN, MICHAEL K.;REEL/FRAME:016560/0747
Effective date: 20050509
|Sep 18, 2014||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Mar 6, 2017||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: DEUTSCHE BANK TRUST COMPANY AMERICAS, NEW YORK
Free format text: GRANT OF FIRST PRIORITY AND JUNIOR PRIORITY SECURITY INTEREST IN PATENT RIGHTS;ASSIGNOR:SPRINT COMMUNICATIONS COMPANY L.P.;REEL/FRAME:041895/0210
Effective date: 20170203